The Drum Major Institute (DMI) Scholars Program aims to support and guide talented young people in the field of public policy. The program identifies progressive college students from diverse communities and trains them in the skills necessary to obtain and succeed in entry-level public policy positions, whether in government, think tanks, campaigns, or advocacy. The focus of the program is the two-week DMI Scholars Program Summer Institute, which trains DMI Scholars to work on solutions to real problems through a public policy lens. The Summer Institute is often held in New York City but may be held in other locations, depending on the year.
There is no fee for applying to or participating in the program. Expenses for transportation, housing, and meals during the Summer Institute are covered by the program.
Candidates must be sophomores or juniors in an accredited U.S. college or university at the time of application, with records of activity that demonstrate commitment to progressive values. Candidates must be willing to attend in-person interviews in March if they are selected as finalists, and must also be able to attend the Summer Institute. (They must also be between the ages of 18 and 25 when the institute begins.)
In selecting scholars, DMI looks for college sophomores and juniors who are sharp, creative, and passionate about changing the world. DMI also looks for strong communication skills and an interest in exploring public policy as a vehicle for activism. A background in public policy is not required.